See the Grishaverse come to life on screen with Shadow and Bone, now a Netflix original series.
Enter the Grishaverse with Book One of the Shadow and Bone Trilogy by the #1 New York Times–bestselling author of Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom.
Soldier. Summoner. Saint. Orphaned and expendable, Alina Starkov is a soldier who knows she may not survive her first trek across the Shadow Fold—a swath of unnatural darkness crawling with monsters. But when her regiment is attacked, Alina unleashes dormant magic not even she knew she possessed.
Now Alina will enter a lavish world of royalty and intrigue as she trains with the Grisha, her country’s magical military elite—and falls under the spell of their notorious leader, the Darkling. He believes Alina can summon a force capable of destroying the Shadow Fold and reuniting their war-ravaged country, but only if she can master her untamed gift.
As the threat to the kingdom mounts and Alina unlocks the secrets of her past, she will make a dangerous discovery that could threaten all she loves and the very future of a nation.
Welcome to Ravka . . . a world of science and superstition where nothing is what it seems.
A New York Times Bestseller
A Los Angeles Times Bestseller
An Indie Next List Book
This title has Common Core connections.
Read all the books in the Grishaverse!
The Shadow and Bone Trilogy
(previously published as The Grisha Trilogy)
Shadow and Bone
Siege and Storm
Ruin and Rising
The Six of Crows Duology
Six of Crows
The King of Scars Duology
King of Scars
The Language of Thorns: Midnight Tales and Dangerous Magic
The Severed Moon: A Year-Long Journal of Magic
Praise for the Grishaverse
“A master of fantasy.” —The Huffington Post
“Utterly, extremely bewitching.” —The Guardian
“This is what fantasy is for.” —The New York Times Book Review
“[A] world that feels real enough to have its own passport stamp.” —NPR
“The darker it gets for the good guys, the better.” —Entertainment Weekly
“Sultry, sweeping and picturesque. . . . Impossible to put down.” —USA Today
“There’s a level of emotional and historical sophistication within Bardugo’s original epic fantasy that sets it apart.” —Vanity Fair
“Unlike anything I’ve ever read.” —Veronica Roth, bestselling author of Divergent
“Bardugo crafts a first-rate adventure, a poignant romance, and an intriguing mystery!” —Rick Riordan, bestselling author of the Percy Jackson series
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
In the first book in Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha Trilogy, a literal darkness has descended on a magical world, letting loose a legion of human-eating monsters. Armies that once fought each other now band together to face down a seemingly impossible foe, and while the teenage Alina was once a mere mapmaker, her newfound magical abilities could be humanity’s only hope. All this, plus an enthralling romantic subplot between Alina and the handsome and mysterious commander who recognizes her gifts, makes for an engaging tale from beginning to end.
In a strong debut, Bardugo draws inspiration from Russian and Slavic myth and culture to kick off her Grisha trilogy. In the nation of Ravka, Alina Starkov is a junior cartographer's assistant in the army, while her best friend Mal is an expert tracker. When a perilous mission into the magically created Shadow Fold goes wrong, Mal is gravely wounded and Alina manifests the rare ability to summon light. Immediately recruited into the order of the magic-using Grisha, Alina is taken under the wing of its intimidating and powerful leader, the Darkling, and heralded as the potential destroyer of the Shadow Fold. As she navigates Grisha politics and uncovers well-hidden secrets, she realizes that the fate of the nation rests on her shoulders and she may be in grave danger. Filled with lush descriptions, intriguing magic, and plenty of twists, this memorable adventure offers action and intrigue mixed with an undercurrent of romance and danger. Alina's angst and passivity are a bit of a letdown, but Bardugo's storytelling and world-building more than compensate. Ages 12 up.
I really enjoyed this book. Alina’s journey from childhood to adult is quick and to the point. It’s enough of a background to allow the reader to understand her actions in the upcoming adventure. The storytelling is beautiful, the imagery compelling, with just enough vagueness to allow the read to fill in the blanks.
I especially loved the points in the story when Alina learns that changes happen, accepts them, and moves on. The decisions she makes are not always the “right” decision, but she owns the outcome and is able to think for herself and grow as a person.
I look forward to the next book in the series.
*Originally posted on goodreads
About Half Of It Was Good
Overall, this was a good book. I can see why it’s popular and I can see why it’s getting its own Netflix series. That being said, despite the imaginative world, intriguing magic system, and historical setting, I can’t shake the feeling that this book is just like every other YA fantasy series.
The protagonist *seems* strong because she’s in the military, but really she spends the entire book getting kidnapped, bossed around, and beaten up in training.
The romance *seems* well developed but in reality Alina falls for an eternal psycho after speaking to him 5 times (not to mention the fact that he ignored her and wasn’t even around for half the book. Real heart throb right there... *rolls eyes*) and then she leaves him (because his mama said to leave) for her sleezy best friend who NEVER liked her romantically until he got jealous. Being best friends since childhood is not an excuse for actual romantic development. Having a crush on a character is not romantic development. Yes, Alina always liked Mal but he literally just woke up one day and realized she wasn’t as ugly as he thought.
The last thing that bothered me is that this book is genuinely JUST another YA trilogy. Like the Hunger Games, like Divergent, like Frostblood, like Red Queen, like the Cruel Prince (which I loved but still... it’s a trope). Shadow and Bone is just another YA series about a weak, ugly teenager with an attitude who becomes strong and beautiful, and then overthrows a corrupt leader while scoring the hottie of the cast. We have read this story again and again and again and for some reason it’s accepted like it’s really something new and amazing.
Lastly... I know this story is supposed to take place in an old Russian setting (I think) BUT I found myself disappointed in the lack of diversity. SURE not many people of color lived in Russia during the era this is supposed to have taken place (and probably not many live there today) but I doubt many Darklings or Sun Summoners or other magical freaks lived there either. If we can picture pretty teenagers shooting light from their hands then I think we can picture brown people simply existing too.
Like I said, this book was good *overall* but there are things I just couldn’t get over and enjoy. Maybe if you’re 14 you’ll love this but I am well past that age therefore my enjoyment is limited haha
Fun quick read
Nice start back into reading